Generous spirit — Give compliments and gratitude and help others in any way possible. No one got to where they are alone.
For someone who wants to set aside money to establish a Philanthropic Foundation or Fund, what does it take to make sure your resources are being impactful and truly effective? In this interview series, called “How To Create Philanthropy That Leaves a Lasting Legacy” we are visiting with founders of Philanthropic Foundations, Charitable Organizations, and Non Profit Organizations, to talk about the steps they took to create sustainable success.
As a part of this series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Heather Locke.
Heather Locke founded Hammersmith Support over ten years ago after she found many of her web clients needed more than a website. She is an incredible designer and developer who can provide website development from start to finish. Hammersmith Support loves assisting customers. They have been providing web maintenance services for over a decade and helping clients enhance their web presence.
One of Heather’s core values is to give back. Growing up in Tennessee, her dad instilled in his girls the importance of supporting and volunteering for your community. His dedication to others inspired her to make community service an integral part of her life and her daughter’s life, who, at a young age, is already learning the same values.
Thank you for joining us. Our readers would enjoy discovering something interesting about you. What are you in the middle of right now that you’re excited about personally or professionally?
Thank you for the opportunity. I’m excited to be featured in Authority magazine.
My company, Hammersmith Support, is in the middle of our annual pro bono campaign when we give away maintenance services to nonprofits in our home states, Arizona and Tennessee. Giving back to our communities is one of Hammersmith’s Support’s core business values, as it enriches everyone.
On the personal front, I’m currently going through Shirzad Chamine’s Positive Intelligence program. I’m a couple of weeks into the 7-week program, and I love the application of his teachings and learning how to increase my positive intelligence so I can perform to my potential.
We all get by with a little help from our friends. Who is the leader that has influenced you the most, and how?
Sherry Stewart Deutschmann inspires me. Sherry is the founder of BrainTrust, a company dedicated to helping women entrepreneurs grow their businesses to $1 million plus in annual revenue. Prior to founding BrainTrust, Sherry was also the founder and CEO of LetterLogic, Inc., a company she grew to $40 Million and sold in 2016. LetterLogic was named an Inc. 5000 company (fastest growing privately held businesses in the US) for ten consecutive years. Her secret to running a successful business is putting her people first.
Sometimes our biggest mistakes lead to our biggest discoveries. What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made as a leader, and what did you discover as a result?
One of my biggest mistakes was not hiring personnel quickly enough, and, as a result, I put my team at a higher risk of burnout as they continued to manage more clients. It’s a challenging balancing act to expand the business but still provide the best service and not disrupt our company’s culture.
How has your definition of leadership changed or evolved over time? What does it mean to be a leader now?
My definition of a leader is to lift others up. This means empowering your team, providing them with opportunities to grow, and leading by example. I use the core values of our company as my guiding principles: customer service, transparency, and giving back to the community.
Success is as often as much about what we stop as what we start. What is one legacy leadership behavior you stopped because you discovered it was no longer valuable or relevant?
I stopped looking in the rearview mirror and evaluating my company against its past. Hammersmith Support has seen significant growth, year over year, and is a very different company today than just a year ago. Being a technology-centric business, it is critical to understand how the web and our client’s needs continue to evolve. Technology makes many things irrelevant, and it can do it very quickly.
What is one lasting leadership behavior you started or are cultivating because you believe it is valuable or relevant?
Whether once a week, month, or quarter, I make time for each of my team members on a dedicated schedule.
What advice would you offer to other leaders who are stuck in past playbooks and patterns and may be having a hard time letting go of what made them successful in the past?
Look for mentors, surround yourself with people hungry for knowledge, and continue learning. They will offer new ways of thinking and inspire you to approach problems from another perspective.
Many of our readers can relate to the challenge of leading people for the first time. What advice would you offer to new and emerging leaders?
Find a mastermind or a group of other business owners to be a part of where confidentiality is honored. This will provide a safe space to tackle your issues, get advice, and learn from other successful leaders.
Based on your experience or research, what are the top five traits effective leaders exemplify now? Please share a story or an example for each.
1 Personable and Open- Open door policy where no topic is off limits
2 Humility — Never believe you are the most intelligent person in the room
3 Generous spirit — Give compliments and gratitude and help others in any way possible. No one got to where they are alone.
4 Forward thinking — Take time to think about the future, possible pitfalls, and opportunities
5 Integrity — Trust is the backbone of every great brand.
American Basketball Coach John Wooden said, “Make each day your masterpiece.” How do you embody that quote? We welcome a story or example.
I set my intentions for the day and outline the must-do tasks.
What is the legacy you aspire to leave as a leader?
I hope my legacy is that I made a difference for my community and my team.
How can our readers connect with you to continue the conversation?
Our website is https://hammersmithsupport.com. We offer a free 30-minute consultation that can be scheduled directly. I’m also active on LinkedIn, and our Instagram handle is @hammersmithsupport.
Thank you for a meaningful conversation. We wish you continued success with your mission.